Tag Archives: helena morrissey

Morrissey Progress Report – first thoughts

Morrissey Progress ReportAs promised earlier, here are my first thoughts on Helena Morrissey’s progress report which she published earlier today. There is so much in the report that I could go in to but these are the main points I’ve noticed.

The party needed to come out of this well, and show good progress in 18 months. To a certain extent it does, and the people who needed to come out of it most well were the leader, chief executive and president, the holders of most power in the party and who are perceived by the public as its face. They were praised for their commitment and for what has been achieved. It was the lack of progress at regional and local level that concerned Morrissey and she wants to see that changed. In many respects I agree with her. However, those of us who value the say that grassroots members have in this party should make sure that there is no “mission creep”. It may be a temptation to take more power than is strictly necessary to the centre and we need to be vigilant on this point.

Morrissey outlines the solid progress that has been made so far on each of her recommendations but is clear that there is still more to do. She suggests further action on two broad themes – structural reform and specific action to make sure that people are aware of the standards of behaviour expected of them.

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Helena Morrissey evaluates party’s progress on her recommendations

Last year, Helena Morrissey published her Report into the Processes and Culture of the Liberal Democrats and made 9 recommendations for change. Here are Stephen Tall’s and Caron Lindsay’s thoughts on it from then.

It was always intended that Helena would come back and evaluate the party’s progress on implementing her recommendations. Her progress report is published today and can be seen here.

This is what she has written in the foreword:

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Call for feedback on progress since Independent Inquiry of June 2013

As set out in my Report into ‘Processes and Culture’ within the Party, I would now like to assess progress made against my recommendations. Taken together, the recommendations formed a suggested – but by no means exhaustive – blueprint for change over both the medium and long term. Less than 18 months has passed since my initial Review, so it was never my expectation that all would be resolved by now, rather that the direction of travel be firmly established.

A number of people attended a ‘surgery’ I hosted with the Pastoral Care Officer, Jeanne Tarrant, during Conference last week. Those inputs have been very helpful – thank you.  I’d now like to hear from anyone who has relevant experiences and views to help me assess the degree of progress made. As in my original Call for Evidence, it would be helpful if feedback could be given around three areas, with specific examples being particularly useful:

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Lib Dems appoint Pastoral Care Officer

jeannetarrantLib Dem HQ has announced that Jeanne Tarrant has been appointed as Pastoral Care Officer. This post was created following the Helena Morrissey Report into process and culture within the party.

In August Party President Tim Farron explained what the party would be doing in response to that report. One of the commitments was to create the new post.

Jeanne introduces herself:

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Tim Farron MP writes… Helena Morrissey report update

The Helena Morrissey report was incredibly difficult reading for our party. Facing up to the reality that the party that I love and joined at 16 had not always lived out its values is painful. But throughout this process my top priorities have always been the people affected, getting to the truth, ensuring justice and making certain that we enact every single recommendation of Helena Morrissey’s report. That’s why I wanted to give you an update on the work we have done to put Helena Morrissey’s recommendations into practice.

Since the report was published, I have made efforts on …

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What Lib Dem members think about The Morrissey Report into alleged sexual harassment within the party

Lib Dem Voice has polled our members-only forum  to discover what Lib Dem members think of various political issues, the Coalition, and the performance of key party figures. More than 600 party members have responded, and we’re publishing the full results.

79% of Lib Dem members support Morrissey Report

helena morrissey reportThe independent Morrissey Inquiry, set up by the party following allegations of sexual impropriety against the party’s former chief executive Lord Rennard (which he denies), reported in June. Are you broadly aware of the report and its recommendations?

    67% – Yes

    28% – No

    5% – Don’t know

How effectively do you think the party has communicated the findings of the Morrissey Report?

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Opinion: The week after the Morrissey Report – what will you do?

Last week Helena Morrissey published the results of her inquiry into how the Liberal Democrats handled allegations of sexual harassment. In our 24 hour news cycle, this may already seem like old news. But it is vital for the future of women in politics that do not allow the report and its conclusions to be forgotten. The change cannot only be top down – it must also be a grassroots movement.

The Lib Dems are not the first institution to be found to have mishandled allegations of sexual harassment. It is particularly galling for party members though, as the picture …

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Helena Morrissey’s Report: No excuses – we have to do what she says and do it well

helena morrissey reportMy co-editor Stephen Tall has already published his first thoughts and a follow up post outlining where praise is due, which I agree with pretty much entirely. I’ve now emerged from my trip to London and subsequent burial under a pile of things that need to be stuffed into envelopes to add a few random thoughts of my own.

“A missed opportunity”

Norman Lamb started to draw up procedures for dealing with harassment in 2003. This work was never completed. Morrissey says:

Lamb is unsure why the drafted procedures were

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Helena Morrissey’s Report: some praise is also due

helena morrissey reportI offered my first impressions of Helena Morrissey’s independent report into the Lib Dems’ culture and practices here yesterday, based on a skim-read and hearing Helena’s presentation of it at a media briefing.

I read the report in full (available online here) on the train home last night. I recommend it to all Lib Dems, and indeed anyone interested in how organisations can totally mess up when dealing with delicate internal issues.

It’s an excellently written, fair-minded, balanced and practical report which understands the idiosyncratic nature of …

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Helena Morrissey’s report: my first impressions

helena morrissey reportI attended Helena Morrissey’s media briefing this afternoon, marking the publication of her independent inquiry report into the ‘culture and processes’ of the Lib Dems following the allegations of sexual impropriety levelled against the party’s former chief executive, Lord (Chris) Rennard.

I’ve not yet had chance to read the full report, so this post is based on a skim read only, together with Helena’s own summary of it to the assembled journalists.

First, Helena set the context: not simply of the specific allegations, but more widely of what she termed …

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Statement from Nick Clegg on the Morrissey Report

Liberal Democrat Leader Nick Clegg has made this statement following the release of Helena Morrissey’s independent report into processes and culture within the Liberal Democrats and her recommendations for change:

I’m very grateful to Helena Morrissey for her very thorough report.

It makes sobering reading. It shows that stretching over a 20 year period a series of mistakes were made which left a number of women feeling seriously let down and for that there is absolutely no excuse whatsoever.

The report also shows that the individuals who dealt with their complaints had the right motives, but there weren’t the right processes

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Morrissey Inquiry into Party processes and culture

Liberal Democrat Chief Executive Tim Gordon has just emailed Party members about the Helena Morrissey Report, published at 4pm today:

Today Helena Morrissey published the report of her independent inquiry into allegations made in February that the Party had failed to respond adequately to complaints and warnings of alleged sexual harassment.

You can find Helena’s full report here.

The report concluded – and the Party has accepted – that, despite recent improvements, and despite the fact that the report is clear that those with whom issues were raised acted in good faith, it failed to deliver the procedures needed in a modern

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Lord Rennard: police launch formal investigation

Today’s Independent reports:

The Metropolitan Police has launched a formal investigation into allegations of sexual misconduct by the Liberal Democrat peer Lord Rennard. Scotland Yard said that detectives had moved from assessing the claims of a small number of women to carrying out “inquiries to corroborate those allegations”. The Metropolitan Police set up a dedicated phone line for alleged victims of sexual misconduct after a number of women made claims in the media about inappropriate conduct by Lord Rennard. The peer, the party’s former chief election strategist, has repeatedly denied any improper behaviour or sexual harassment.

He said at the time

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Helena Morrissey talks to Woman’s Hour

Liberal Democrats will recognise Helena Morrissey as the chair of the Independent Inquiry into the Party’s processes, set up in the wake of the allegations against Lord Rennard, which he denies.

I thought you might be interested in her interview on Woman’s Hour from last week. You can listen to it here on iPlayer from about 19 minutes in.

She was there to discuss her work as founder of the 30% Club, aimed at increasing the proportion of women on boards, and the proportion of women coming through in senior executive positions to fill the boards of the future.

She talked about …

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Reminder: Just 2 days left to respond to Independent Inquiry into culture, processes and complaints

If you wish to submit evidence to Helena Morrissey’s Independent Inquiry into the culture, processes and complaints within the Party, you have just two days left to do so. Do not miss your chance for your voice to be heard. Evidence must be submitted to [email protected] by Friday 5th April.

Helena explained what she was looking for in an article on this site last week:

With a week to go before the deadline for written submissions, I’d like to make a further call for any evidence that may be relevant to my independent inquiry. As previously indicated, the review covers three

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Update on Party response to allegations of sexual impropriety

The Liberal Democrats have today announced that Helena Morrissey has been appointed as the chair of the independent inquiry into culture, process and complaints within the Liberal Democrats.

The review will also look at attitudes towards women in the party, as well as the employment relationship between staff, elected officials and volunteers; training; and how to lead a wider change in Westminster.

Helena Morrissey has been a leading light in promoting women and breaking barriers as CEO of Newton Asset Management and Founder of the 30% Club, a cross-business initiative aimed at achieving 30% women on UK corporate boards by 2015. I …

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